ISLAMABAD - National Accountability Bureau Chairman Qamar Zaman Chaudhry on Wednesday said the NAB had initiated the awareness campaign to raise level of education and information among the people about the ill-effects of corruption, promotion of ethical values and inculcation of sense of duty among individuals and groups so as to make a robust resistance against corruption in the society.

The NAB chairman was addressing the 5th Awareness and Prevention (A&P) Directors Conference which was held at the NAB Headquarters. It was attended by the deputy chairman, the DG (A&P), the DG operations, the DG (T&R) and A&P directors of respective regions throughout the country.

The chairman said the A&P Directors Conference was a very important forum for exchanging views and ideas in order to have a better coordination and comprehensive A&P strategy to eradicate corruption and corrupt practices through holistic approach.

Qamar Zaman Chaudhry said enforcement regime of anti-corruption laws is directed at curing the symptoms of corruption without treating its causes. In this regard, the anti-corruption education of people through well-coordinated awareness campaign and adopting preventive measures can contribute towards laying the foundations of long-term changes. Therefore, a balanced combination of enforcement, awareness and prevention strategies are more likely to defeat well-entrenched corrupt practices in every social setup. He said all-out efforts were being made through a participative approach to adopt preventive measures to nip corruption in the bud.

Qamar Zaman said the focus of NAB’s awareness and prevention strategy should be the concept of horizontal accountability, adding each pillar of the state should play the role of a watchdog for at least one institution. This approach will reinforce the hard work of anti-corruption efforts by all state institutions and private sector partners. He said the role of awareness and prevention division is imperative in educating the public sector as well as the society at large about the need to take on the menace of corruption head-on. He asserted effective and far-reaching awareness campaigns must be designed to target all segments of the society in highlighting the ill effects of corruption.

The NAB chief said the role of character-building societies in educational institutions must be made more effective as it alone can bring the desired change in the fabric of the society. The media is very vital in highlighting NAB’s achievements and effectively sending the message across, he added.

He said the formation of prevention committees has been a significant step, but there is a need to reinvigorate their existence so as to achieve the desired results. He hoped this conference would prove to be a turning point in further strengthening the role of awareness and prevention strategy through holistic approach.